Simple English definitions for legal terms

criminal law

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A quick definition of criminal law:

Criminal law is a set of rules that say what people can't do, and if they break those rules, they can be punished by the government. Crimes are things like stealing or hurting someone on purpose. Each state and the federal government have their own rules about what is a crime and what the punishment should be. To prove someone committed a crime, the government has to show that the person did something wrong on purpose. There are different types of crimes, like really bad ones called felonies and less bad ones called misdemeanors. If someone helps a criminal, they can also be punished. There are some defenses that people can use if they are accused of a crime, like saying they didn't do it or that they had to do it to protect themselves or someone else.

A more thorough explanation:

Criminal law is a system of laws that deals with crimes and the punishment of individuals who commit crimes. It is different from civil law, which deals with disputes between two parties over their rights. In criminal law, the government decides whether to punish an individual for an act or omission that violates a law prohibiting said action or omission.

These examples illustrate criminal law because they are all acts that are prohibited by law and can result in punishment by the government.

Every crime involves three elements:

  1. The act or conduct (actus reus)
  2. The individual's mental state at the time of the act (mens rea)
  3. The causation between the act and the effect (typically either proximate causation or but-for causation)

The government has the burden of proof to establish every element of a crime beyond a reasonable doubt.

There are several defenses available to a defendant in a criminal prosecution:

These defenses can be used to argue that the defendant did not commit the crime or that they should not be punished for it.

Criminal law is a system of laws that deals with crimes and their punishment. It involves three elements of a crime, and there are several defenses available to a defendant in a criminal prosecution. Examples of crimes include robbery, murder, assault, and drug trafficking.

criminal justice | criminal procedure


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when you said bye den dropped out of my life
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